Bulbbul just released on Netflix, and it has already created quite a stir. The movie, produced by Bollywood star Anushka Sharma and her brother Karnesh Sharma, is the directorial debut of Anvita Dutt. It is a horror film which relies more on suspense than out and out horror to engage its audience and that proves to be quite an effective ploy. Though it has just released and the audience acceptance is still to be gauged, it can be safely predicted that the movie will paint you in its color of suspense– red.
Bulbbul- An Overview
The movie is set in the late 17th century Bengal province, and the story is woven around the members of the Thakur family, who happen to be zamindars. When Bulbbul is brought to the Thakur mansion as the child bride to the eldest among the three brothers of the Thakur family, there is no hint of what is about to unravel. Twenty years later, a string of events molds the plot into an irresistible mix of drama, suspense, and horror. The movie then oscillates back and forth between a time period of five years and in the process unveiling some of the darkest secrets of the Thakur family. The climax of the movie is a gut-wrenching, unpredictable one. Thereby, balancing suspense and horror without falling into the over-dramatic category, something that Indian horror movies are recurrently guilty of doing.
Bulbbul Review: Much more than just a horror film
Cinematography- Less is More
Over time, we have come to expect a certain kind of cinematography from Indian horror films, which are akin to pouring a lot of chaat masala in a bowl of chaat and finding out that the chaat has turned intolerably bitter. Well, the Bulbul movie is a welcome exception.
It balances its cinematography stupendously well by keeping it simple, yet in a manner that would stir up suspense in the minds of the viewers. Even, in the climax scene, it doesn’t overdo the effects in the quest of making it more horrifying. Ironically, that is what makes it hit the nail right on its head. Also, any Bulbbul review would be incomplete without praising its background music. Again, it is nothing extravagant, but enough to send a chill down the audience’s spine.
Acting- Experience does the star turn
The cast of Bulbbul adorned by experienced and polished actors like Rahul Bose, Paoli Dam, and Parambrata Chattopadhyay. The experience and artistry that they bring to the film fuse with the energy of Tripti Dimri (playing Bulbul) and Avinash Tiwary (playing Satya) to make Bulbbul a crowd puller (well, not to the theatres but to Netflix). Rahul Bose, despite doing a double role in the movie of two completely opposite characters, does not let the bar drop even an inch through the entire duration of the film, while Paoli Dam makes us fume with rage by portraying her character exactly as it was meant to. Parambrata, like always, is flawless in the portrayal of Dr. Sudip.
Story- Don’t overlook the hidden message
By now, you must have realized that Bulbbul is a horror film. Well, technically, you are right. The story is about a witch going on a murdering spree, and a young man named Satya bent on finding and killing the insidious murderer. But, hidden underneath the layer of drama is a deep social message- violence against women.
All the victims of the witch are males with one common feature- all of them were guilty of hurting women. In the patriarchal Indian society where violence against women is rampant, the movie speaks out loudly and unapologetically against this malpractice, which is commendable. What is even more delighting is the mould that the scriptwriter chose to carve the message on. Not often do you find a horror movie dealing with an issue that has been plaguing the Indian society for centuries now.
Final Verdict: Fix a date with Bulbbul
Bulbbul is not the typical Indian horror film. It is better, more mature, and is something that is worth watching after lights out. It is an unapologetic, bold film that punches way above its weight and deals with a much wider periphery than its genre suggests. Movie-buffs know that missing out on such a movie is nothing short of a crime.
So, get your cushion and bowl of popcorn and get ready to crush on Bulbbul.
If you love watching movies with hidden messages, you could try Chaman Bahaar. To get an idea of the film, read our review of Chaman Bahaar.
Also, Anushka Sharma is making quite a name for herself for producing original movies and series that are bold and very relevant to Indian society. This is her second release in two months, with the first one, Patal Lok, being a smashing hit on Amazon Prime. We recommend you to watch that series too.
So, that was our take on Bulbbul, the latest offering of Netflix India. Let us know what you thought of the movie in the comment section below. Also, subscribe to our newsletter to get updated every time we release something new and interesting. We will be back soon with more reviews, till then, happy watching!